Greens have cautiously welcomed the news that the City Council has agreed to an air quality target which exceeds the current legal annual mean limit for NO2 target of 40 µg/m3. The target will seek to reduce this to 30 µg/m3 by 2025. Although the current legal annual mean limit value for NO2 is 40 µg/m3, research now shows that this is not a safe limit.
Says Green Cllr Craig Simmons, "Setting an ambitious target for 2025 is welcome, but the Council has not yet demonstrated that it has met current legal commitments (40 µg/m3). In fact, the available data shows that it is failing to do so; in 2019/2020 emissions in Oxford actually increased!
We have seen delays in the introduction of the so-called Zero Emission Zone and a botched policy on car park development and pricing which has actually encouraged people to drive in to the City Centre. Yes, it is good that the Council is setting a challenging 2025 goal, but it seems to want to run before it can walk."